Valerie's Family Research Web Page: A Kennedy Family History
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A Kennedy Family History
Descendants and Relations of William M. Kennedy
of Chester County, Pennsylvania

A work in progress ...

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Valerie Capels

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Reports | Documents | Photos | Links

Questions of Origin
Where did the Kennedys of Chester County, Pennsylvania originally come from?  What brought them to Pennsylvania?  What are the connections with other Kennedys in the area and beyond?

We have been able to search this family line of William M. Kennedy only as far back as his father Samuel Kennedy, whose birth and death dates and origins are unknown. Information to date tells us that William had at least three siblings: Samuel, John, Sarah, and a brother whose name is not currently unknown.  He married Sarah Elbehar in Honey Brook in 1863

This Kennedy line is descended from William M. Kennedy's son William Sloan Kennedy.  The source of the middle name Sloan is a mysterious clue.  William Sloan Kennedy was the third of nine children, all born in Honey Brook, Pennsylvania.

The information presented here is based upon pieces of information obtained from historic documents, photos, and the personal knowledge as shared by family members.  Together they provide only a fraction of the story of each individual and their experiences.

516 Gay Street, Phoenixville, PA
516 Gay Street
-- click on image for larger view, 35 KB --
Photo taken by Diane Shupe, 2001
Photos add a special dimension to a project like this.  Among other things, they help remind us that this is about more than facts and statistics; these were real people of flesh, bone, and blood.  They experienced the adventures of youth, the trials and tribulations of raising a family, the struggles of work and making ends meet, the joys of traditions, and the sorrows of loss.  Some died young; others lived long, fruitful lives.  In some instances, we may even see a reflection of one another.

There is great risk in reading too much into isolated pieces of information.  Imagine trying to figure out what an elephant looks like with only a toe, an ear, or just the snout as clues.  The further we go back in to time, limited available records--if we're lucky to find any at all--provide only a momentary glimpse into a situation, and often subject to the interpretation or limitations of the person recording it.

I have tried to be diligent in recording the sources of my information so that it can be judged by myself and others as to its reliability.  Just because a record exists does not mean it was recorded accurately, whether by the scribe or the original provider.  But such records are helpful in providing us with clues that could help verify our assumptions or point us in directions.

Any information, corrections, clippings, suggestions, and/or photos offered that will help weave the fabric and reveal the texture of the Kennedy family's history will be greatly appreciated.   All photos or other original documents will be handled with great care, copied, and promptly returned to their owner, unless instructed otherwise.  While I am eager for ANY information, including stories and oral histories, that will help tell our story, I also want to be respectful of people's privacy and to use discretion in matters that may be sensitive.

This document is only as complete and accurate as the information available up to this moment.  No doubt it will continue to evolve over time, as it should.

Information to share?  Please contact me at [email protected].

WorldConnect Data for William M. KENNEDY
WorldConnect Register Report for William M. KENNEDY
WorldConnect Descendant Report for William M. KENNEDY

WorldConnect Data for Sarah A. EBELHAR
WorldConnect Register Report for Sarah A. EBELHAR
WorldConnect Descendant Report for Sarah A. EBELHAR


Lillian May Kennedy
Lillian May Kennedy
(Aunt Lil)

Aunt Lil
Aunt Lil in her garden
Aunt Lil in Phoenixville garden
Bena Marie Kennedy, 4 yrs. old
Bena Kennedy,
4 yrs.
Lillian, Willard, & Bena Kennedy
Aunt Lil, Willard & Bena Kennedy
Bena Marie Kennedy
Bena Marie Kennedy

Bena K. & George Shupe, Wedding Day
Bena Kennedy Shupe
Bena Kennedy Shupe

Bena & Pete Shupe
Mary Gries Kennedy
Mary Gries Kennedy

George C., Jack & Bena Shupe
William Kennedy, Sarah Ebelhar, et al.
William & Sarah Kennedy, Samuel Kennedy Welsh, Flora White, unident. boy
William, Winfield, & Walter Kennedy
William, Winfield, & Walter Kennedy
Reserved Reserved Reserved Reserved
Reserved Reserved Reserved Reserved Reserved Reserved
Reserved Reserved Reserved Reserved  
Can you help identify this family?

Honey Brook Methodist Cemetery, Honey Brook, PA
grave of Lillian May Kennedy
Lillian May Kennedy

John T. and Emma Kennedy

William F. and Leah Kennedy

Wlater John Kennedy

Wayne C. and Virginia C. Kennedy

William M. and Sarah A. Kennedy

Winfield S. Kennedy

Peter J. and Laura Mertz

John L. Trester

Edwin and Flora White

George D. and Elizabeth L. Kennedy

William S. and Marie A. Kennedy

Lillian E. and Mary C. Kennedy



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    Pennsylvania Genealogy Resources General Genealogy Resources
    • (an affiliate of, connects Internet users to hundreds of millions of fully searchable individual records, about half of which is free and other half available by subscription.
    • Cyndi's, a categorized and crossreferenced index, or "card catalog" to the immense library of genealogical resources on the Internet.
    •, a major genealogy reference library and resource center built and maintained by professional genealogists to serve the needs of beginning researchers and experienced family historians.
    • (also an affiliate of, is the oldest and largest FREE genealogy Web site, containing numerous interactive guides and research tools, including the WorldConnect project.

    Posted February 22, 2004
    Updated April 3, 2006

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